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Friday, June 14, 2013

The Orioles Still Completely Own The Red Sox, For Whatever Reason

Don't get me wrong, I know the Orioles are a good team but I'd be lying if I told you that I can rationally explain why they have dominated the Red Sox the last three seasons (23-8) and are the only opponent with a winning record (4-1) against Boston so far this year. Tonight at Camden Yards, the O's (39-29 overall, 19-14 home) blanked the Red Sox (41-28 overall, 20-14 away) 2-0.

This came on the heels of Baltimore's 5-4 win in 13 innings on Thursday night. Did I mention that the Orioles have pulled within 1.5 games of the Red Sox so if they sweep Boston this weekend, they would take over first place in the AL East? Yikes, that could definitely happen.

Four pitchers combined on the shutout for the Orioles: starter Chris Tillman (7-2) threw six scoreless innings with three strikeouts, Darren O'Day (seventh), Tommy Hunter (eighth) and Jim Johnson (ninth, 24th save) all had 1-2-3 innings, hence why this game finished in a crisp 2:43.

Ryan Dempster (4-7) pitched one of his better games for the Red Sox but it wasn't good enough: 7.2 innings, 2 earned runs, 5 hits, 4 strikeouts and 5 walks. His arm might fall off (he labored through 122 pitches) but he saved Boston's bullpen since Koji Uehara only faced one batter-J.J. Hardy (who he retired on 3 pitches to end the eighth with two men on).

Baltimore had five hits, led by Manny Machado (3 for 5 with 2 doubles). Boston only had three hits as a team, two by Jose Iglesias (who extended his hit streak to 15 games) including a double.

Chris Davis, who has morphed into Miguel Cabrera Jr., hit an opposite field solo homer in the second (his 22nd of the season) and Nate McLouth scored in the third on Adam Jones' infield single.

Before they drop the puck on Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals (8, NBC), John Lackey (3-5) faces Freddy Garcia (3-3) tomorrow afternoon (4:05, NESN) as the Red Sox try to find a way to beat the Orioles.

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